Senior portrait contract help

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by DanF89, Aug 3, 2008.

  1. DanF89

    DanF89 TPF Noob!

    Apr 24, 2008
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    Michigan, USA
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    Photos OK to edit
    Hello all,

    I'm 19 and just stepping into the world of portraiture and paid assignments. I've been into portraiture for a year and a half now, done two formal assignments, and now I'm sitting on two senior portrait assignments for pay. I'm taking this opportunity to build a pricing model and contract, but I need help with the contract part. Could anybody here provide some input on an outline, what is important to include, and maybe even link me to some samples?

    Thanks a ton,
  2. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    Look up model releases. You need to include one in there, and that will probably be the bulk of your contract.

    For a pricing model, figure out first if you will be giving them digital copies. If you are, plan on charging more because you should also be selling them the rights to make their own prints from them (in my opinion, it's naïve to assume people won't do that these days, regardless of a contract).

    You should have a basic sitting fee and specify in the contract how much time that includes as well as how many clothing changes that may include. Then include options for more time, but not with a linear rate increase. For example, say you plan on charging $100 for 30 minutes with the option of 1 clothing change (probably not enough time for that, but this is just an example). Don't expect to charge $200 for 60 minutes with 2 clothing changes, but something more like $150 or $175.

    You also need to decide how much touching up you plan on doing "for free" - or included in your basic sitting fee. For example, when I had my senior photos taken way back at the beginning of the millennium, the place charged $10 per zit removal and other charges or other things (the zit one was the one I remember because I thought it was funny). So that may influence your sitting fee or you may choose to simply tack those on as options. The way the place I went to back in the day showed us the proofs and then the price list along with the touch-up options AFTER we had already had the photos taken, NOT up front (which I thought was really tacky and deceptive).

    To actually establish dollar amounts, I would suggest looking around your area for what OTHER photographers are charging and base your prices on that. You could probably go to the schools and ask if they have a contract with a certain company (as my school did, which basically got them exclusive marketing rights at the school) and look at their prices as your model.

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